Photo: Maserati Haute Route Norway/Emmanuel Molle

Region Stavanger has over the last months been working with OC Sport to facilitate for the prestigious event Maserati Haute Route Norway. Norway was launched earlier this year, but the final destination has so far been a secret to the general public and the cyclists. Now the global sports marketing and events company can finally launch the Stavanger Region as the host for their new arctic cycling event Maserati Haute Route Norway for the years 2018, 2019 and 2020. Haute Route offers amateur riders the professional experience and is said to be the highest and toughest cyclosportives in the world. Only the top most iconic cols are used and events so far have been organised only in the Pyrenees, the Alps, the Dolomites, the Rocky Mountains and now also along the spectacular Norwegian fjords and mountains.

The Stavanger Region has become known for its high-quality event management experience through several large international annual events such as Tour des Fjords, Norway Chess, Swatch Major Beach Volleyball, Blink Skifestival and many more, but more importantly is the strong successful cycling community in this region. The local clubs have developed young talents such as Alexander Kristoff, Gunn Rita Dahle, Sven Erik Bystrøm, Susanne Andersen and more, and Tour des Fjords has developed to become one of the most important cycling events in Norway. Tour des Fjords has also recently strengthened its position with a partnership with Velon and welcoming Hammer Series to the Stavanger Region as the only destination in Scandinavia from 2018. Race Manager Roy Hegreberg and his organisation has worked in close cooperation with Region Stavanger and been essential in bringing the Maserati Haute Route Norway to this region. His background as a top cyclist along with the strong experience and competence in organising the race, has given OC Sport the local expertise they were looking for.

«The cycle community in this region, at all levels, have worked hard to develop young new talents within the sport of cycling, but also cycle tourism in general has been focused on with projects such as Bike the Fjords, developing event management competence and networking with international associations such as UCI, Velon and others. It’s a pleasure to see that this give results and that the world is discovering Norway and what this region has to offer in terms of spectacular cycling in spectacular scenery – which has been the success for Tour des Fjords for years.» 

Photo: Region Stavanger, Flor og Fjære: the official launch of Maserati Haute Route. From left: Michelle Milas (Region Stavanger), Matt Holden (OC Sport), Mayor Irene Heng Lauvsnes (Strand Municipality) Roy Hegreberg (Tour des Fjords), Annamaria Guiterrez (Stavanger Municipality) Ane Kristine Rostrup (Sandnes Municipality) Julie Royer (OC Sport) Beth Hodge (OC Sport)

Also local authorities have been engaged in giving their support to the event. Both the Rogaland County and the municipalities of Stavanger, Strand and Sandnes have been engaged in the bidding process. They are now happy to welcome the cyclists in the coming years. The Mayor of Strand, Irene Heng Lauvsnes, emphasizes the spectacular scenery and nature:

«Strand Municipaliy is the gateway to the iconic rock plateau Preikestolen and the mountains in Ryfylke. We are close to Stavanger town, near the sea and a neighbor of Lysefjorden. Our inhabitants love to be in nature and we welcome active tourists to our beautiful nature!»

The Mayor of Sandnes, Stanly Wirak, supports her statement.

«Sandnes is an experienced host of large events and hosts annually Tour des Fjords, Blink Skifestival, the North Sea Cycle Race and Norway Chess. The route from Lysebotn to Sandnes is one of the most spectacular routes for a race in this region, and we are certain the participants will love the spectacular scenery of steep mountain sides along the fjords.

Christine Sagen Helgø, the Mayor of Stavanger sums up the local hospitality with a smile:

«We welcome the Maserati Haute Route and their participants to the Stavanger Region and are certain it will be a great success».

The Minister of Transport and Communications Ketil Solvik – Olsen is a keen cyclist and was invited to participate in the test event last week.

«It is fantastic that the Maserati Haute Route will take place in Norway. This will benefit the tourism industry and the cycling environment in Norway. It was great to be able to participate in what will become a prestigious cycling event in Norway over the next three years»

Region Stavanger is pleased to welcome a new event to the region, especially a prestigious event as the Haute Route. Haute Route has a strong brand and represent quality events that suit this region well. Many of the cyclists follow Haute Route in their events around the world and a highly dedicated cyclists. Manager of Events Anette Larsen Bognø emphasized the importance of this event:

«Tourism is the most rapidly growing industry in the world, and adventure tourism the most growing within this. Launching such an event as Haute Route in this region is an honour  and we are pleased to welcome both the event organisers and the participants in the years to come. OC Sport wish to use local expertise for their event, something we found important when we decided to work with them on this. Use of local resources is important for tourism development and employment, and it was natural for us to connect them with Tour des Fjords and Roy Hegreberg. Tour des Fjords represents both quality event management with their own race as well as the local cycling clubs

Anette underlines that is has been an exciting and fast process:

« It has been a great pleasure working with OC Sport, and they are now looking at the westcoast of Norway as something exotic, arctic and new. The interest for cycling in Norway is exploding. Added to the strong sport and cultural communities, beneficial current ecxhange rate, reasonable hotel prices and availability, this gives us excellent conditions for great cycling events in the best spectacular scenery of them all!»

Anette suggests the region gets ready to welcome the Maserati Haute Route cyclists from all over the world!

The Maserati Haute Route Norway will come to Norway and the Stavanger Region the first week of August 2018!

Photo: Maserati Haute Route Norway/Emmanuel Molle